"The board is oversight of the projects. It’s advisory to the council. The council will rely on these people to help them make those decisions.”
Ward 5 Councilman Brian Walters, the only council member who opposed MAPS 3, agreed with Cornett and White that the council should have the ultimate authority on how the estimated $777 million for the program will be spent.
"The elected officials need to be the ones that say yes or no because they are the ones that can be held accountable,” Walters said. "During the campaign, they said ‘trust us.’ I think anything that goes wrong should be laid at their feet.”
Humphreys said a more empowered oversight board makes sense with the kinds of large projects included in MAPS 3.
"Let’s say you are looking to spend $100 million of MAPS 3 money,” Humphreys said. "If you can’t get a majority of the citizen’s oversight board to agree with you, does it make sense to spend that money? I say no.”
Cornett said just because the board won’t have veto authority over how the money is spent doesn’t mean it won’t play an important role in the process.
"It is certainly not window dressing,” Cornett said.
"They are there to deal with the many, many issues that will be coming from staff needing opinion and insight so they can give the council direction.”
Ongoing coverage: MAPS 3